Black Friday ain’t what it used to be. Winners will be big merchants with finely tuned e-commerce channels and mega-marketing budgets. Think Amazon, Target, and Walmart. Losers will likely be mall-centric stores such as JCPenney, Kohl’s and Macy’s. Black Friday was formerly the key day when shoppers would flock to stores and buy up a storm. Retailers would offer their best deals as key incentives to visit stores. E-commerce has changed all of this. Merchants now offer online deals starting in early November through Christmas, turning the day of Black Friday into Black Friday season.
Even Cyber Monday deals that Amazon made big have spilled over across days and weeks through November and December. Merchants that have perfected a true omni-channel strategy will reach the hybrid shopper no matter where there are: mobile device, computer, or in-store. The calendar also shows that there are six less shopping days this year between Thanksgiving and Christmas—another reason why merchants start their marketing blitz well ahead of Turkey Day. Our outlook is for robust consumer holiday spending with year-over-year increases in the 4-5% range, but the retail landscape will continue to change going into 2020 and the New Year will bring more store closings. Holiday shopping sales results will determine who those will be. Stay tuned.
A CNBC article discusses more on this topic which is excerpted below.
Macy’s, Kohl’s and J.C. Penney are struggling to drive shoppers to malls.
Black Friday has long been a day these retailers relied on to boost sales.
But the shopping day doesn’t hold the same weight it once did.
Black Friday isn’t quite the deal frenzy it used to be. Retailers have been touting bargains for weeks. With more shopping moving online, it has only become easier to compare prices, and so the lure of doorbuster deals is losing its grip on shoppers. That only means more bad news for a group of retailers that has long been dependent on the shopping holiday to push them “into the black,” or toward profitability: America’s department stores.
It’s true, there are still the traditionalists, who feel the holidays aren’t complete without a post-turkey trip to the mall. These are the shoppers who thrive by lining up in the cold, waiting for a retailer’s doors to open in the wee hours of the morning, hoping to score a deeply discounted kitchen appliance or office gadget. Department stores in particular are known for handing out those kinds of doorbuster deals, which are only available in limited quantities for a short period of time. But today, with the internet at consumers’ fingertips, the appetite to jockey through crowds for coupons or “buy one, get one” offers has waned.
Overview provided by Raymond Pucci, Director, Merchant Services, Mercator Advisory Group.